Концепт: философия, религия, культура

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Given its topicality, it is tempting to suppose that one may find important insights into the politics of late 5th C. Athens in Aristophanes’ comedies. The problem, I contend, is when scholars think they can discern Aristophanes’ own political views simply by supposing that some character in the play (or the chorus leader in the parabasis) directly presents the author’s views. As tempting as such an inference sometimes is, it is one that should be made with  extreme caution. For each example of what might seem to some scholars as serious political advice, one may find many other instances that cannot possibly be taken to represent Aristophanes’ real views in the lines he has written. In this discussion, I take up just one case of political speech in an Aristophanic play, Frogs, and argue (contrary to most existing scholarship) that it should not be interpreted as didacticism. Instead, I argue that Aristophanes gives samples of political advocacy from the most extreme poles of contemporary ideology, in such a way as to highlight how dangerous and foolish such policies would be. 

Aristophanes was mocking, not endorsing, the follies that would soon prove to be so ruinous for Athens.

Об авторе

N. D. Smith
Lewis & Clark College
Соединённые Штаты Америки

American Philosopher and James F. Miller Professor of Humanities and Professor of Classics and Philosophy

0615 S.W. Palatine Hill Road, Portland, Oregon 97219-7899, USA

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Для цитирования:

Smith N.D. AGAINST A DIDACTIC READING OF THE PARABASIS IN ARISTOPHANES’ FROGS. Концепт: философия, религия, культура. 2019;(4):37-42.

For citation:

Smith N.D. AGAINST A DIDACTIC READING OF THE PARABASIS IN ARISTOPHANES’ FROGS. Concept: philosophy, religion, culture. 2019;(4):37-42.

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